For the lack of a better term I am using “Mental Issue,” M.I. for short, as a blanket term to describe what we have and deal with on a daily basis. I want to use “Issue” because I don’t want to call it an “Illness.”

Illness, to me anyway, implies that it can be cured, it’s something that you caught and didn’t have before. It’s a part of us, it’s in our DNA, and it’s something we didn’t choose to have but something we live with on a daily basis.

When our M.I. kicks in it’s called “An Episode.” An Episode of what? Are we a sitcom or drama that people sit back and watch? While it may certainly feel this way for non M.I.s, for those of us going through said “episode” it feels more like a storm. Comes on with little to no warning. A lot of huffing and puffing, with loud crashes of thunder. For this reason I will refer to them as Storms and not “Episodes.”

By talking we can begin healing and understanding on both
sides. Ask questions and listen to the answers, don’t judge, don’t speak, just listen.

Monday, August 15, 2016

To Caregivers

For you caregivers out there, when you find yourselves frustrated and say, “I don’t understand.  I don’t know how to help you,” just remember, for those of us living with depression, neither do we.
While there are deeper emotions and darker demons I am fighting, my own personal monster as it were, what I am about to describe is a generic base of how most people with depression feel.  Take from it what you will.
What must be understood, is that what goes up must come down and that includes us.  It’s nothing you or I did, it just is.
While I was driving home from work I was on a high, happy, singing in my vehicle at the top of my lungs like Tom Cruise in Jerry Maguire.  It’s ironic that the song he was singing is titled Free Falling because that’s what happened next.
A car pulled up next to me at a red light, close to my home.  The woman was wearing a gallon of perfume because the smell drifted in the rain soaked air toward me.
Without warning a memory triggered, then another, then another.  The next thing I knew I came crashing down to Earth, with no way to brace myself.
In the span of a literal second I managed to not only crash but to bury deep underground, the impact causing my world to collapse around me.
I couldn’t see, my eyes were liquefied with tears.
I couldn’t breathe, the air being sucked out of my body as I began to ache all over.
The pain became so great that as the light changed I had to pull over to the side of the road and park.
The monster deep inside began to crawl out, saying the key words that weaken me and makes it easier for it to take over.
“You’re the true monster.  You’re worthless.  You’re not good enough.”  And the ever glass shattering, “No one loves you.”
Thoughts of ending it all did cross my mind but those were just that, thoughts, and not actions.  I’ve learned long ago that I am not strong enough to follow through with those actions.  I will always cower out.
Make no mistake, it takes true strength to follow through.  For you caregivers, be thankful if your love one is too weak not to complete the act, if they were not they would be gone.
I made the effort to slowly make it home.  Inside I was still dying and there was nothing anyone could do about it.  I just have to wait for my storm to pass.
So don’t give up on us, caregivers, for we are all weathering this storm together.

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